Yesterday Rafael dos Anjos withdrew from his UFC 196 lightweight title fight against Conor McGregor on March 5th due to a broken foot.
Immediately there were several contenders campaigning to fill in against McGregor. Donald Cerrone, Anthony Pettis, Urijah Faber, and Nate Diaz all asked for the fight against McGregor, however Diaz ultimately filled the vacant slot.
Surprisingly, Jose Aldo and Frankie Edgar both turned down the fight against McGregor. This left many fans confused given how bad both men wanted to fight McGregor.
McGregor’s coach, John Kavanagh, wrote in a blog post for The42 that if you want to fight Conor McGregor, you better stay ready!
Back in September, Conor said something significant at the UFC’s ‘Go Big’ press conference. He told every contender from 145lbs to 170lbs to stay ready because it’s not uncommon for his opponents to pull out. There’s a pattern emerging that one fighter pulls out, another fighter steps in and then it’s passed off as being a short-notice fight. It’s not.
He continued with:
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“If you want to fight Conor McGregor, get ready — even when someone else has got the gig. There’s only a handful of names who could have received the call, so they should have been ready. There’s a lesson to be learned here for any guy who genuinely wants the opportunity.”